The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.
Sally Magee of Magee Leadership Solutions, Inc. kicked off NAWIC LA’s 2019 Professional Development series with a workshop on Communication Styles on January 15, 2019. She began the workshop with a quote by Peter Drucker, “The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.” And how do we do that? By paying attention to verbal and non-verbal clues, such as the tone of voice, body language, and other interpersonal behaviors.
For example, a man’s lower pitched voice can be seen as authoritative and decisive; whereas a woman’s higher pitched voice can be perceived as timid or uncertain.
Sally covered some important points about gender-based communication differences. For example, a man’s lower pitched voice can be seen as authoritative and decisive; whereas a woman’s higher pitched voice can be perceived as timid or uncertain. Men are generally seen as more concrete, competitive and solutions-oriented; where women are generally more empathetic, nurturing and compromise-seeking. These generalizations can have huge impacts on the effectiveness of our communication, especially in the workplace.
Participants walked through an exercise to identify their preferred communication style as one of the four principal categories: Relator, Socializer, Thinker or Director. Sally discussed the aspects of body language and other communication signals to help explain the aspects of each style, based on direct or indirect tendencies, and open or self-contained behaviors.
She explained each style values most: for Relators, it’s strong relationships and harmony. For Socializers, it’s about recognition and status. Thinkers value precision, accuracy and getting the facts rights. For Directors, it’s all about results and accomplishments.
The group enjoyed learning about the nuances of each of the four communication styles and discussed strategies for improved communication with those who have different styles than their own. The key to effective communication is knowing when to be adaptable and flex our style to ‘meet in the middle’ with others; i.e., follow the Platinum Rule of “treating others the way they want to be treated.”
Following the workshop, several participants commented, “The presentation was so easy to follow and there was good interaction with the audience,” and “For me, the most valuable takeaway was learning about my own style and why I am who I am.” All respondents rated the workshop as either very good or excellent, and 100% said they would recommend it to their companies or other teams and projects they are involved with.
“For me, the most valuable takeaway was learning about my own style and why I am who I am.”
Our Chapter President, Shilo Losino, also commented, “I personally enjoyed Sally's presentation. It was immediately applicable to me both in business and personally. It provided vital insight in working with others. I appreciated her ability to read and engage the audience as well as make the information interesting. Everyone was fully invested in what she had to say. She was fully prepared and personable. Our Chapter is looking forward to accessing her knowledge for other series & would highly recommend her as a speaker.
Sally is the President of Magee Leadership Solutions, Inc. a woman-owned small business based in Southern California whose mission is helping organizations build peak-performance teams and high-impact leaders. She works with large and small businesses in the engineering and construction industries providing project partnering, team building, leadership coaching, organizational development, and management training services. She would love to help your organization transform into a peak-performance team! Visit her website at www.mageeleadership.com, download her brochure here or reach out to her on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/sallymageebankes/ or Twitter at @SallyConsulting.